The Roads Less Travelled

Last modified on August 31st, 2010

I was out with some friends the other day in Stanley Park in Vancouver, and I was briefly considering changing my Twitter profile photo to a shot my friend John took. Rebecca then pointed out that it probably would be good to finally get rid of the PlentyOfFish photo I have had on Twitter for a while. Since I had no idea what she was talking about, I started prying for some more information. Apparently the photo I had put up on Twitter was a watermarked version that I had put on PlentyOfFish a few years ago. I’m not sure how the watermarked copy ended up on my computer, but somehow I managed to get it up on Twitter and leave it there for about six months. Oops.

Thankfully all my friends thought it was a deliberate joke, but the truth is I had no idea. I mean, who looks at their own photo on Twitter?

On that note, I thought I’d write a post about online dating. Back in about 2005 I took a brief stab and seeing what it was all about. I had profiles on Lavalife and PlentyOfFish, and probably went on about 8 or 9 dates after it was all said and done. I ended up dating a girl from Lavalife for about two years, and have managed to stay in touch with about three of the other girls over the years – but the rest were pretty much duds. In fact, I suspected many girls at the time were simply using Lavalife as a way to get a free date every once and a while, something my roommate (who was a girl) admitted to one night as well. Being an old fashioned kind of guy, I picked up quite a few tabs for girls who I’m pretty sure didn’t really care at all about getting to know me better or getting anything else out of the date besides a free meal. But whatever, I can’t exactly blame them for that. But without a doubt, those experiences back in the day have left me a bit jaded with regards to going on dates these days.

I no longer have any online profiles any more, but I occasionally bounce around Craigslist to see if I’m missing anything. Truthfully, not a lot. While Craigslist probably isn’t the best place to meet a great person, I find as I get older there are less and less opportunities to meet people in “the real world” who aren’t piss drunk all the time or looking for a free ride. I’m also surprised by the complete lack of basic english skills in some of the postings. Sure, I use short hand when I’m typing on my phone sometimes. But Craigslist isn’t a phone, right? See the big green Send button on your computer? Me either.

One thing I’m always amazed at is the amount of effort people spend dictating what it is they must have in a significant other, without touching on anything at all they can provide. And when I say provide, I don’t mean services, cleaning, massages, or what not. But all the ads seem to be completely one-sided, which is probably why most of the people on there aren’t really dating material in my book.

Sure, having a 6’2″ boyfriend might be pretty cool when you’re a 5’5″ tall girl – but is that a requirement? Nice car, nice place, good job, slick hair. Maybe these girls should just start dating movie posters.

I won’t lie, part of the reason I want to do a bit of traveling is that I really haven’t met many people in my home town with similar interests as myself, either guys or girls. I went on a few dates this last year that I thought might go somewhere, but unfortunately life got in the way, as it often does. I honestly spend enough time talking about technology and the internet during the day that I don’t really care if I ever end up with a girl that is interested in those things as well, but having someone that is interested to some degree because I am interested would be a bonus. But unfortunately most people here in Chilliwack settled down right out of high school (a large percentage of them started settling down in high school actually!), so I feel a tad bit out of place lately around here these days.

I’m not expecting the world to suddenly change when I get on an airplane, but I am at some level expecting myself to change. There aren’t a lot of opportunities to get out and do things around here, and I find I spend the majority of my free time hanging out close to home. I like hitting a pub and having beer with friends as much as the next person, but it seems like I’ve been doing that same routine for over a decade now, and it’s growing a bit old.

I remember living in Ottawa, and being a bit lonely when I moved out there. Jump ahead two years and things were pretty much the same. Sure, I had met some friends, but when we weren’t all out drinking, I found myself at home most of the time. Since I’ve found myself a bit stagnant lately in my home town, and really can’t imagine anything changing locally here to mix that up, I figure the change has to come from me, so I’m going to branch out and see some new things.

Obviously my family is a bit sad to see me go, and I’m going to be a bit sad to leave. But I am looking forward to a new adventure, and for opening up some new possibilities. One of the main reasons I moved back home in 2009 was to save some money and work to get BraveNewCode off the ground with Dale. After two years now, I think things are doing just fine, and I can afford to take a few more risks in my life now.

Where will the road go? I’m not sure to be honest. If I were to have looked back last year at where I’d be today, it wouldn’t be here. That’s not bad per se, it just is. Maybe when I’m done traveling I’ll end up back here. Or maybe I’ll end up back in Vancouver for a while. Or maybe somewhere exotic where the beer flows free and the siestas are long. The not knowing is actually part of the fun, so we’ll see.

5 responses to “The Roads Less Travelled”

  1. Kat says:

    Duane…maybe the male version of Eat Pray Love! Actually just go out and enjoy life come what may.

  2. Dale Mugford says:

    Well I for one am super excited for you, and proud to know that we’ve built something that supports realities created from dreams.

  3. Raul says:

    Great post, Duane, and I look forward to hanging out with you wherever your journey takes you. Hopefully not south of the border for now! 🙂

  4. “Somewhere exotic where the beer flows free and the siestas are long” sounds pretty perfect to me. Enjoy your adventure! I’m sure you will make all kinds of amazing discoveries on your journey and end up just where you’re supposed to be.

  5. Tyler says:

    You’re going to have awesome adventures and hoping you can find yourself time and Internet to report back to those who are curious about your travels!

    One thing I’ve learned from Robyn and her travelling friends will be the amount of other people (who too are travelling) you’ll meet along the way. She’s meet many people from her various travels around the world and still they all manage to keep in touch.

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